It was the vision of our founder, Dr. Joseph Moylan that Durham Nativity School would provide a learning environment for eligible middle school boys in grades six through eight. Dr. Moylan envisioned a program in Durham to support students in their personal, social, moral, and intellectual development, as well as position them to be successful at college-preparatory high schools and beyond.
Durham Nativity promotes an academic program that fosters excellence in traditional liberal arts disciplines with a focus on Judeo-Christian values. Through an extended day and school year, we provide opportunities for students to engage in activities that promote sound physical and mental health, artistic achievement, and character development guided by a faculty and staff who believe in each student as an individual.
The Durham Nativity School curriculum encompasses fifth grade through eighth grade. We are committed to providing our students with a challenging, standards-based curriculum to best prepare our students for the rigors of high school, college, and beyond.
Our recently renovated facility offers students a welcoming academic environment with fully-equipped classrooms and labs for an enhanced learning experience.
Our curriculum is guided by state and national standards such as the NC Essential Standards, Common Core, and the Nativity Miguel Schools Standards/Benchmarks. Additionally, we offer physical education, character and leadership education, career awareness and arts enrichment.
The Board of Trustees, staff, and faculty of Durham Nativity School believe that an excellent educational program serves the needs of the whole child, building the necessary skills for each student to become a leader and change agent within their community.
Durham Nativity School course offerings include:
• Reading/Language Arts
• Social Studies
• Foreign Language (Latin and Spanish)
• Character Education
In addition, all Durham Nativity School students participate in study skills, homework help, student advisory, art, choir, physical education, team sports, and community service learning.
Durham Nativity School follows a traditional class schedule which includes three morning classes and three afternoon classes. Each class is one hour. This daily schedule allows for effective facilitation of instruction which invokes critical thinking, discovery/problem-based learning, differentiated instruction, and reading and writing. Our instruction addresses the various learning styles of students in whole group, small group, or individualized formats.Class Schedule
Report Cards, Grading Policy, and Semester Reports
Student grades reflect a holistic view. Durham Nativity students are given a fair chance to succeed in all aspects of school life including their academic achievement. Teachers are encouraged to use a wide variety of formal and informal assessments for each student address different learning styles. The grading system at the Durham Nativity School is based on achievement letter grades and numerical effort grades, according to the following scale:
A (96-93) Excellent performance
4 = Excellent Effort
B (88-85) Good performance
3 = Good Effort
C (80-77) Satisfactory performance
2 = Unsatisfactory Effort
D (72-69) Unsatisfactory performance/Significant weakness
1 = Poor or No Effort
F (68 or lower) Failing or inadequate performance
Students and parents have open access to our online gradebook. Additionally, they receive information concerning academic progress through mid-semester progress reports and semester report cards. There are two marking periods per year equaling the two semesters that the students are in school.
Parents or guardians meet with teachers on Parent Conference Days (as noted in the master school calendar ) to review the mid-semester progress reports and semester report cards. This gives parents and teachers the opportunity to discuss student progress, develop an action plan if improvement is needed, and communicate praise or concern.
All Durham Nativity School parents or guardians are required to participate in Parent Conference Days, and, by law, employers must grant parents time to visit their child’s school for this particular purpose.
Establishing a school culture that encourages and inspires students and families to serve and give back to the community is integral to our mission to educate the whole child. At Durham Nativity School, service learning plays a significant role in developing young men to be grateful, thoughtful, and caring community activists.
DNS seeks to more fully empower our youth with a student-directed, integrated and supported service learning program to develop young leaders able to initiate and plan community projects. We emphasize community involvement encouraged across our academic disciplines with awareness of current social justice issues. This student directed intra-community service model teaches our students critical leadership skills and provides the Durham community with committed development projects.